The Ponchatoula Chamber of Commerce will host Small Business Saturday this week.

Small Business Saturday reminds residents to purchase merchandise from small, locally owned and operated shops and businesses. Ponchatoula offers an array of specialty items, ranging from antiques, to hand-embroidered linens, to hand-fired pottery, to farm tools. The aim of the day is to present the perfect place to spend a day shopping, dining and having a relaxing holiday experience.

Founded by American Express in 2010, the impetus to shop small and local has taken off across the U.S., with millions of shoppers stepping away from the maddening throngs of wild-eyed consumers and preferring the quieter, welcoming shops, restaurants, bakeries and lounges on Main Street, Chamber officials said in a news release.

The Ponchatoula Chamber of Commerce applied and was accepted into the Neighborhood Champion Program promoting all small businesses open Saturday. Consumers will find soft music, raffles, giveaways, homemade snacks and drinks, and free canvas totes.

One of the highlights of the day will be the Blue Passport Program. Visitors can pick up their “passports” at any small business between now and Saturday. Shoppers can stop in eight small-business locations to receive their passport stamped, no purchase necessary, and turn it in at one of the designated locations to collect a reward. Completed passports will be entered for three big prize packages, Chamber officials said.